My Life’s Work

Potter and ClaySo often the great scholars and artists speak of their “life’s work” (usually in movies when said work is going up in flames, but that’s beside the point). Yesterday I saw a billboard on the side of the road, an ad for a college. It was probably aimed at people older than the traditional college age and asked something to the effect of “have you found your life’s work?”

Well, because I’m easily sucked in I actually pondered this billboard. I have no plans to become a great scholar or scientist necessarily. I don’t think I’ll be devoting my life to researching a cure for cancer or fighting poverty. I realized, however, that my life’s work will be my students.

As a teacher, my kids will be the ones I stay up nights for, worry over, whose success I obsess about. They’ll be the thing that keeps me going, keeps me moving, and makes it all worth it in the end. (Somehow.) Their learning will be what I measure myself by. They will be the thing I would give up anything for.

I’ve been thinking the last few days about money. Stupid idea, I know. But student loans are scary. The company servicing my loans was kind enough to email me a snapshot of my current debt earlier this week. My mom and I were also discussing a young woman we know who recently graduated as a PA and will be making a considerable salary (more than a teacher’s I’ll tell you that!).

Here’s the thing. If I wanted to, I’m certainly smart enough to be a PA. I have the potential. I’m not belittling what they do, I’m just saying I didn’t pick education because it was an easy A (though yeah I wouldn’t call most of my ED classes thus far challenging). I chose education because I felt called to it.There’s a thousand other things I could do with my life. A thousand other majors. But I chose elementary education because I want to help children and because it’s where God called me.

I went on a rant recently along these same lines, saying how I hope my students appreciate it. And sure, it would be nice if I was appreciated. But what’s going to make it worth it in the end is to see my life’s work succeed. To see a third grader understand fractions or a second grader read “magnificent” or to see them walk across that stage at graduation and know I helped get them there.

My students are my life’s work. Classes will come and go but children will always hold a special place in my heart.

Whether I’m a teacher or a mom or an aunt I would be devoting myself to children. I believe today’s children are tomorrow’s Einsteins, Washingtons, and Austens. They deserve the chance to become the people they are meant to be. I want a hand in forming the artists, thinkers, and world-shakers of the next generation, for the better.

So no, I won’t be making 6 figures and making big changes on the global stage. But maybe my students will.

NOTE: I wrote this post over 2 weeks ago but never got around to publishing it. It speaks to my thoughts at the time and in my firm belief that teaching and/or children are meant to be the focus of my life. Upon rereading this tonight, however, I realize you could replace “my students” with “my kids”. (But that will depend on where God leads me of course.)

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 42) Reasons to Consider Home Schooling

— 1 —

Apparently May is Home Schooling Awareness Month. So, in honor of that I present 7 reasons to consider home schooling. I’m not a parent but I was home schooled growing up. I’m a firm believer in placing the student in the educational environment best for them. For some students, that may be at home.

Without further ado, #1:

Because why not? Just consider it. Think about it. Pray about it. It’s an option, so look at it.

— 2 — 

Freedom of time.
You can vacation/visit colleges/pop over to grandma’s whenever you want. You can take a day off if you just really need one. Your kids (and you) can sleep in late. Or they can get all their school work done before lunch. It’s learning on your time.

 

— 3 —

You can watch and appreciate videos like this:

And this:

— 4 —

Freedom of learning.
If your eighth grader wants to read the Sherlock Holmes stories, great! There’s English! Throw in some Kipling and Bronte, have them discuss the books and write papers. Suddenly bam! Your child can add “Victorian Literature” to their transcript and they get to read what they enjoy. Or maybe your sixth grader excels in science. Well then let them! Give them a challenge. Do fun experiments. Teach your kids what you want them to learn. This applies especially to values. When you’re the one doing the educating you decide what lessons your kids take away.

— 5 —

Math can be fun.

homeschool homework

— 6 —

Individualized learning.
I really enjoyed this part of being home schooled. In high school I was able to concentrate in the areas at which I excelled and was given more time in the areas where I didn’t. People learn differently and express their learning differently. It can be tricky, I imagine, when you’re trying to keep straight and cater to each student in a class of 25. If you home school you could maybe let your kids write short historical fiction pieces instead of reports. Or watch videos about math. Or do more hands-on work. It’s up to you. The point is  learning can be how they learn best.

— 7 —

You get to be in the cool kids club.

via morguefile
via morguefile


Okay, maybe that sounds exclusive. But if anyone asks if you think home schooling actually works, you can just show them this list of world-changers and success stories. Add to the list Josh Hutcherson, Einstein, and so many others. No need to worry. It can work. So why not consider it?

Linking up with Jen at Conversion Diary! Go check out the other posts in the link up!

NAS: Friends

This week’s topic from the NAS link up:

We LOVE the NAS community, but creating a real-life community is essential to our lives! What have been your struggles in making friends as a young adult? Do you have any advice for those struggling to build community post-college?

So, I’m going to amend this a little, seeing as how I’m not living post-college. I’m going to talk about making friends in college as that’s something I actually have experience with.

I’ll admit I’m lucky when it comes to my friends. I have a great core group of girls. And even though we don’t always get along perfectly and we’ve certainly been known to annoy each other I couldn’t trade them for the world. They make me a better me. I also have other great friends who continue to build me up. How did all these friendships begin?

Well, I think most began with a conversation. Now maybe you’d seen them around before or heard their name mentioned. But actual friendships form when at some point someone says something to someone else. Then things just kind of happen. You enjoy talking and you talk more. You do things together. You see each other. And bam one day you realize you’re friends. I know its probably not like that everywhere. It’s just been my experience.

Isn’t it kind of amazing how a person who was once a stranger, can suddenly, without warning, mean the entire world to you?” ~author unknown

There are different levels of friendship and acquaintance-ship. Friendships with girls and friendships with guys tend to be slightly different, at least in my experience. Especially when there’s interest on the girl’s side. Friendships also are different when you live with someone or work with them or if you’re just in class together or see each other around.

One thing I’ve learned though from my close friends is that a friendship requires work. I like to think I can be polite to anyone who is remotely polite back. But building a bond of true friendship requires effort and a few realizations.

1) No one’s perfect.
I think this is one of the most important realizations. I used to look for the perfect bestie. And I thought I’d fund her, twice. Only to be disappointed when she did something slightly annoying. I’ve since realized that we’re all human and it is all but impossible to find someone who thinks exactly like I do. And that’s ok. We need those differences to stretch us and form us into better people.

2) You do annoying things too.
Yep. I’m still learning this lesson. But it’s true. My friends aren’t perfect. But neither am I. I’m sure I do things that my roommates can’t stand. I whine. I talk too much. None of my anecdotes are funny. But they accept me even with those flaws, just as I should accept them.

3) Differences are okay.
Growing up my family did things one way. We made pancakes from scratch. We always had certain holiday traditions. We never made a cake except out of the box. We didn’t eat spam. My mom’s lasagna was the epitome of delicious. When I got to college my friends had different ideas and different traditions and different ways of doing things. I must admit it can be frustrating at times. But I know it’s important to see beyond that and recognize that just because they do something differently doesn’t make them wrong.

Though these are mostly suggestions for maintaining friendships I think they’re important to realize as you set out to make those solid friends.

There will be drama and difficulties but there’s a reason God placed these people into your life at this time. Maybe it’s so you can learn to be strong and walk away. But maybe it’s so you can be worn smooth and made into a better version of yourself.

On the practical side I think the most important things to remember are to find friends who share the same values as you (not necessarily religion but values) and who you have something in common with (interest, likes, temperament, etc). Find friends who will make you a better you, who will challenge you but not break you down. Then maintain those friendships, living them out with love and respect.

On Coming Home Again

Home sweet home. Only not.

I didn’t move much growing up…ok, we never moved. The house that my parents and I drove away from when I headed to college was the same house that I was (accidentally) born in. It was the same house I’d cried in as an angsty teenager when I yelled that no one understood me. And the same backyard I used to play pirate ship in during those long summer afternoons when I was a child.

This house holds a lot of memories. So does this town. But not all of them are good. And most of them (almost all of them) aren’t who I am now.

One of the worst thing someone ever said to me was that to them, after 4 years, I hadn’t changed. The truth is I’ve been changing for years. Trying to change for the better. To become less shy. To conquer my faults. To become a better me. And I’ve done that. Not that I’m done. Or perfect. Or vain. But objectively, I know that I am better. I’m proud of that and how far I’ve come.

To be reminded of my mistakes and the person I used to be, especially after months away is hard. I start falling into old habits only to wonder why. But to not come back is impossible. This is my home. For better or for worse. With all its sorrow tastes and bittersweetness.

This is the house in which I first held my youngest sister the day she was born and stared into her dark eyes. This is the backyard where the lilacs bloom every year around my birthday. The same flowers whose scent is magic and difficult to replicate. This is the town in which I was formed. This is the house where I became the girl who left home with ambition in her heart. The house I return to a woman with confidence in my step ready to enjoy a visit, to share in the troubles and the love. Because here are the people I love with all their flaws and all their quirks.

NAS: If I’m Called to Religious Life…

So, I’m finally making the plunge and linking up with Jen and Morgan for the Not Alone Series for the first time. I’ve read some of the posts before and admired it from afar. But I’ve never really felt it was the link-up for me. But thing’s have changed lately. I think this post will help explain why.

My first time joining this link-up and this is the topic I get:

While most of us feel called to marriage, it is important to see the beauty in all vocations! If/when you were discerning religious life, which communities interest(ed) you? What do you see as the positives of that vocation?

This is actually a perfect topic. Because discerning religious life? Yeah, been there, done that. Kind of.

Okay…story time.

When I was in high school I was coming into my faith. I was realizing the beauty of it and starting my personal journey with God. I was enamored with the whole thing, with the joy and the community I had found. I was also a helpless romantic. As a sophomore in high school I remember saying to a priest that I was pretty sure I was called to be a sister. I wanted what they had and perhaps, in a way, I saw it as the logical next step on my journey.

Then came senior year. A year of decisions. I was still contemplating religious life and that fall I went on a discernment retreat. In adoration I believed I received a sign. I thought that I should look at religious orders dedicated to the Sacred Heart. Later, I recalled that I had already visited one such order. After that, I was pretty convinced that the sign had been true and this was God’s way of saying that this order was where I was supposed to be.

So a month later I visited them. I hated it. I didn’t feel welcomed I didn’t feel at home, I didn’t feel peace. I was confused and upset. But…this was where God wanted me. Or so I thought. And that was the most upsetting part.

I wrestled with it for months. Eventually, I decided I would do it. I would join the convent. Needless to say I hadn’t discerned properly. I’m not saying you can’t have reservations about your vocation or that you have to love every aspect of it. But from my understanding God’s will should bring you peace not the twist of emotions and dread that I felt.

Thankfully, God was at work. I told my mom that I would be joining the convent. The next day she put down a housing deposit at Benedictine College. She said she wanted to give me time to think about it. Well, it didn’t take long for God to tug at my heart. I came for early orientation at BC and loved it. I wanted this. And it’s where I’m meant to be.

So here I am, finishing up my sophomore year of college. I’ve done a lot of thinking and discerning this year about my vocation. I don’t know that I have it all figured out. I don’t think I’ll wind up in religious life but if I do, that will be okay with me. I’ll get to have prayer and daily Mass scheduled into my day for me. My life will be simpler and spent in service to others. And if I get married that will be okay too. Ditto with single life. Every vocation has its challenges and its joys. I’m still trying to figure out which joys will be mine. In the mean time I’m continuing to discern and I’m waiting. Waiting on God. And potentially waiting on my future husband. 😉

The positives of religious life, I think are things which initially attracted me to it and which I still see as beautiful and appealing: living in a community of  Catholic women, trying together to be holy, and giving yourself completely to God in a special way. Religious life is beautiful and I think it’s important to acknowledge that no matter what your vocation is. I will never be a priest but I still acknowledge the beauty of that vocation.

If God does call me to the life of a sister I’m fairly confident it will be to an order with some sort of apostolate such as teaching or possibly nursing. The School Sisters of Christ the King come to mind, as do the Sisters of St. Francis of the Martyr St. George and the Dominican Sisters of St. Cecilia. I’ve had some type of contact with all 3 orders, the first two especially. They seem to be beautiful orders of happy young sisters living their callings (and having fun while they do so!). Honestly it wouldn’t be so bad.

But I’m still on a journey. And I’m glad to be sharing this journey with my friends and with all of you and to be finally joining the NAS link-up.

 

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 41) Struggs, a Rant, the End of the Semester, and Maybe I’ll Miss School

— 1 —

It’s been a while since I did a Quick Takes Post…or much blogging at all for that matter. Frankly, I’ve been lacking motivation for a lot of things lately. Including class. No, I didn’t skip. But I wanted to…oh, how I wanted to.

For an overview of my life lately see 25 Signs You’re So Over This Semester. It’s freaky accurate. No I haven’t resorted to dry shampoo or completely stopped taking notes. But microwave food? Yep. No desire to clean? Check. Massive procrastination? This blog post is evidence of that I think.

— 2 — 

This semester could end today and that would be totally ok. I’ll take my grades as is and leave for the Summer. Give me some time to recharge and I’ll be back in August. But please let it end. I’ve came to a breaking point this week. After staying up until 5am watching the double canonization on Saturday I stayed up until 2:30 on Monday night writing a paper. I managed to drag myself out of bed in time for 10:50am Spanish test yesterday. But promptly took a nap that afternoon. This has been…a struggs week. A massively struggs week. If you don’t know (i.e. aren’t from kansas or the surrounding area) struggs means struggles, struggling. It’s a word I’ve adopted since coming to school here, mostly because it perfectly summarizes the feelings of despair, frustration, and problems in one syllable. So yes, this week has been struggs. It’s also been crazy. I’m pretty sure every one of my suitemates is done with this semester, some more than me. There have been interesting conversations at 12:30 at night and more than one evening of Walmart adventure this week.

— 3 —

Moving on to Summer…after a week at home I’ll be working with the Little Sister of the Poor. I’m getting really excited and started looking up things to do in the city I’ll be in. I know it’s going to be great! And great for me. For the record, though, I’m pretty sure that life is not what I’m called to. Don’t worry, I’ve thought about it. A lot.

— 4 —

A funny thing happened today. So, to completely switch gears, I had my Spanish Oral exam today. After my professor commented on my knack for the language and said she hoped I would take more Spanish. Then, as I was leaving her office, I ran into my history professor. He randomly asked me (first thing out of his mouth) what my major was. I told him education. He went on to say “because you’re really good at history” and asked if I had considered a minor.
*sigh*
If only there were enough credits in a semester…Actually, if money was no object I would gladly stay in school an extra year, or maybe even two. I’d also study abroad. The fact is though, that I have to be realistic. (Though I might just check what would happen if I did switch my major.)

I just hope that years from now my future students will realize that I could have majored in many things but chose to serve them and educate them on not only reading and math but also on how to be proper humans beings. I hope they’ll recognize that what I chose to dedicate my life to was them and their education. I hope they see that with my gifts an abilities I tried to make our education system better for them and children throughout the country.

*end of rant*

— 5 —

My professors are also part of the reason I love this school so much. After my Spanish oral exam I stayed and chatted with my professor for a moment. She has proved to be one of my favorite teachers. In fact, Spanish class is one of the bright spots of my day. She’s great, my classmates are great, and the subject is one I like. I didn’t like this professor at first, but she has really grown on me. I find that there’s a few teachers like that. In the end, I value the lessons they taught me (and I don’t mean the subject) and come to appreciate them.

I can only hope I’m as good a teacher someday.

— 6 —

Speaking of this school…our dean wrote a blog post about her experience and how the community here has helped her as she deals with a trauma in the family. The community. That’s probably takes second place only to the faith life on my list of things I love about my school.

— 7 —

So…what started out as an “I’m so done with this semester” whine-fest turned into “I really do love this school”. Welp, that’s college for you!

Linking up with Jen at Conversion Diary! Go check out the other posts in the link up!

Why I Love St. John XXIII

Happy canonization day!

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With all the hype around JPII’s canonization I couldn’t help but feel bad for John XXIII. I mean, he became a saint too and if it wasn’t on the same day as one of the most beloved popes in very recent memory well…he would probably get more attention.

I have seen a few things on John XXIII and I’ve been doing my own research too to incorporate facts and quotes about him in the Sunday bulletin I edit for campus ministry. And you know, the more quotes I read, the more stories I hear, the more I love him.

So, I’ve compiled some of my favorite quotes, stories, and pictures from around the web all about the brand-new St. John XXIII.

First, check out some short bios on the new saint. Though he was only pope for a few years, John XXIII had a major impact on the church. This man saved thousands of Jews during anti-semitism in the 1930’s and 40’s. He served as an army chaplain during World War I.

Oh, and he opened Vatican II….

Quotes

See everything, overlook a great deal, correct a little.”

“Consult not your fears but your hopes and your dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do.”

“If God created shadows it was to better emphasize the light.”

“It is easier for a father to have children than for children to have a real father.”

“It often happens that I wake up at night and begin to think about a serious problem and decide I must tell the Pope about it. Then I wake up completely and remember that I am the Pope.”

“The council now beginning rises in the Church like the daybreak, a forerunner of most splendid light.”

Memes and Pictures

Man of the Year 1962
Man of the Year

 

John XXIII Beard

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My favorite….

One of the first things I came across was John XXIII’s decalogue or “Only for Today”.

     Only for today, I will seek to live the livelong day positively without wishing to solve the problems of my life all at once.

     Only for today, I will take the greatest care of my appearance: I will dress modestly; I will not raise my voice; I will be       courteous in my behavior; I will not criticize anyone; I will not claim to improve or to discipline anyone except myself.

     Only for today, I will be happy in the certainty that I was created to be happy, not only in the other world but also in this one.

     Only for today, I will adapt to circumstances, without requiring all circumstances to be adapted to my own wishes.

     Only for today, I will devote ten minutes of my time to some good reading, remembering that just as food is necessary to the life of the body, so good reading is necessary to the life of the soul.

     Only for today, I will do one good deed and not tell anyone about it.

     Only for today, I will do at least one thing I do not like doing; and if my feelings are hurt, I will make sure that no one notices.

     Only for today, I will make a plan for myself: I may not follow it to the letter, but I will make it. And I will be on guard against two evils: hastiness and indecision.

     Only for today, I will firmly believe, despite appearances, that the good providence of God cares for me as no one else who exists in this world.

    Only for today, I will have no fears. In particular, I will not be afraid to enjoy what is beautiful and to believe in goodness. Indeed, for twelve hours I can certainly do what might cause me consternation were I to believe I had to do it all my life.

For Your Further Enjoyment

John XXIII’s humor and wit

Lifteen article on “Good Pope John”

Also, a quick video on how awesome St. John XXII is

Yep, this is one of the saints whose canonization Mass I stayed up until 5am this morning watching. #worthit

 

Life Updates and Ramblings

So, I feel like a terrible blogger. Here I set the goal that I was going to write 100 posts this year, posts with pictures and quality writing. But I haven’t posted in a month. Not even my weekly quick takes. I sort of fell off the edge of the blogging world. And why?

Well, busyness and a general lack of interest. It’s been hard to be interested in anything lately. I want the summer to be here already. I want to be done with school and philosophy class and I want to stop having so many pressing responsibilities at least for a while.

But enough whining. Time for some life updates. This summer will be interesting for one. I’ll be working with the Little Sisters of the Poor and living with them about 2 and a half hours from home. It will be weird not being at home and nursing home work is never where I imagine myself, but I think it will be a good experience for me.

Though I haven’t been blogging, I’ve done a little writing in the form of fiction. Nothing much. But I’m getting back into that old hobby (passion *cough cough*). Someone whose opinion I respect recently told me that they had really enjoyed one of my old pieces and thought I had real talent. I guess I’ve always know I was good, but not quite as good as she was saying. It made me realize I should really take a look at writing again.

A few days ago I also was faced with the reality that I am an adult. After having bought 2 pounds of chicken (with a coupon) and a plane ticket I just felt like my adulthood was being held up right in front of my face. It was kinda scary. And then again today I realized that I won’t be a teenager for much longer.

This weekend I’ve just been relaxing and enjoying myself. (Happy Easter!) I was sick, but if I had to be sick, at least it was when I didn’t have class. I did a little homework too. But otherwise…I watched movies, slept in, made and ate delicious and filling food, and today we went shopping and spent more money than we should have on pretty clothes and shoes. #nojudgement

I didn’t write any goals for April, which just reflects how aimless this month (or two) has been. March’s Goals are here….I’ve met some of those by now, others not so much. The next few weeks will be crazy. It’s 21 days until I’m done with finals and 25 days until I board my plane to head home for a week before I go to live and work with the Sisters. It seems unreal. But I’ll be glad to be done with this semester.

And during those 25 days I’ll hopefully find make time for blogging because I enjoy writing a well-written piece be it fiction or a blog post.

Happy Easter Monday!

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 40) St. Benedict, Change, Silence, and Catholic Ramblings

— 1 —

Back to school…back to the old grind… It was a bit difficult the first day or so back at school. But it’s actually gotten easier. I’ve been getting up with more time to get ready in the morning. I’m trying to get back on top of classes and am trying out some new study tricks for Spanish. Philosophy is still not my thing though. And I don’t think it ever will be. But the fact that it’s difficult for me to translate what Aristotle is saying  is not something I really care about.

— 2 — 

Today is the Solemnity of the Passing of St. Benedict at least for benedictines. And since I go to a benedictine school and am benediction by extension it is for me too. Which means today was a solemnity. On a Friday. In Lent. I had chicken for dinner and sung alleluia unashamed.
I’m really starting to love benedictine spirituality as I learn more about it. The community is a huge part of it for me. We have a class on specifically benedictine spirituality here. I might take it some time.

— 3 —

Why I like change and my roommate loves stability. My roommate and I were discussing this morning our thoughts on change. I personally love the idea of adventure, new places, and new things to do. She on the other hand loves the idea of stability. We realized that, in a way, it may be because of our childhoods. She moved around a lot while I lived in the same house my whole life. It’s incredible what effects your childhood can have on you.

— 4 —

I’ve really been thinking about silence lately. The other day I was also thinking about music.It used to be you would get dressed up and go to a concert where you did nothing but listen and appreciate and analyze the music. Nowadays, it seems we often fall into the trap (myself included) of using music as a distraction, a way to block out the silence. Because let’s face it, silence, for whatever reason is scary. We don’t want to to have to think about the difficult things. We don’t want to consider what our minds will bring to us or how God will speak to us. So we block out His voice and even our own thoughts. Because that’s the thing, as someone reminded me today, God only speaks in silence.
It’s difficult but I know that I need to find and embrace silence of mind most of all. I need to let go of all the worries, the plans, the internal, eternal to do list–and be silent and still.
“Be still and know that I am God.”
Is that we can only know He is God, if we are still?

— 5 —

Today is National Down Syndrome Day. I loved this list on Buzzfeed of reasons why people with down syndrome are pretty awesome to have in our world.
Also, this is a great video addressed to an expectant mother:

From this article.

— 6 —

The Pope and President. So, apparently President Obama will be visiting Pope Francis soon. And apparently last time Obama visited a pope that pope gave him a church document on bioethics. Just some tidbits to consider.

— 7 —

Also, this just makes me sad. And angry. But mostly sad. A group of nuns has come out in support of the HHS mandate. It makes me sad to see these women who the faithful should be able to look to as spiritual mothers aren’t living up their roles but are in fact acting completely counter to the church and her teachings. These are women I should be able to look up to as women of faith and role models in the spiritual life. But, they are only human. My only recourse right now is to pray for them and ask you to do the same. Pray for all our sisters and nuns and religious. There are so many good orders and sisters and nuns out there, and yet examples like this are unfairly casting them in a poor light. The Little Sisters of the Poor are fighting against the HHS mandate in order to avoid violating their consciences and to speak up for religious freedom. I just wish all religious and all the laity would too.

Linking up with Jen at Conversion Diary! Go check out the other posts in the link up!

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 39) The Travel Bug, Reading, and an Unproductive Spring Break

Linking up with Jen at Conversion Diary!

— 1 —

Spring Break has not been productive, at least not as productive as I was hoping. I’ve done pretty much no homework. Honestly, school seems like a dream. Tonight and tomorrow though, I will have to do some work before I head back on Sunday. But I really don’t have any motivation to do so. I did however, observe in a school yesterday morning. First grade. It was great. It reminded me why I want to be a teacher. Past all the red tape, and the political correctness, and all my notions, there’s teaching. That’s why I chose this major and this career: to help children.

— 2 — 

Am I an introvert? I think I’ve come to the conclusion that I need quiet time. And by that I mean time for my mind to be quiet–no computer shining in my eyes, no worries pressing on me. Just me and something simple (prayer, doing dishes). There comes a point when I’m sick of all the noise. And I just want to get away from it and recharge. But does that make me an introvert? Or just an extrovert who like, everyone, need quiet time? Maybe I’m just somewhere in between. Regardless of how I label it though, I appreciate that I’ve done at least one thing productive this week and made this realization. It’s important for me to recharge and how I do that is in the quiet.

— 3 —

That being said, the travel bug is back. I have an adventurous streak which I’m just learning to recognize. Particularly, I want to travel. I have for years. When I realized I couldn’t study abroad I thought I’d set that dream aside for now or at least put it in the back of my mind. But then I was reminded why I want to go recently, and so yeah, it’s back, or I guess it never went away. I realize that I won’t be going abroad any time soon, but someday I hope to.

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The fact that I liked the King and I at age 12 should have given me a hint about a lot of things actually. The movie was one I enjoyed when I was younger. It was one of my first experiences with musicals. I found a cassette (yes a cassette) of the soundtrack first and listened to it on repeat. It maybe wasn’t my favorite, but I liked it. The themes that connect to my own life I noticed later. First, there’s the travel and adventure part of it: a proper English woman moves to a foreign country where she knows no one to start a new chapter in her life. Sound like an adventurous streak? Then there’s the fact that she’s a teacher. Because, well, I’m going to be a teacher, she was a teacher. Also, Anna loved her students. That’s why she stayed (twice!), because she loved those kids. Last, Anna, though a softy, was also a woman with determination or perhaps stubbornness. That another thing I can see in myself.

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Lent! It’s been almost 10 days since Ash Wednesday. I’ve broken at least one of my lenten resolutions so far, maybe two. And the third is one I would have to set out to break. I have been home for most of Lent though. My days flow differently at home. We’ll see what happens when I get back to school next week.

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Pope Francis was elected a year ago yesterday. Where was I a year ago? Check out my admittedly enthusiastic post from that day. It’s cool to have a blog to look back on my thoughts and feelings and memories. Sitting in that auditorium my whole body was filled with adrenaline. It was a definitely an exciting day. I also wrote a post the other day about my thoughts on what Pope Francis has done in just one year.

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Reading. I finished Insurgent yesterday. And of course, it ended on a cliffhanger. I’ve got a number of things on my reading list beside Allegiant too. I came by a copy of Four Signs of the Dynamic Catholic the other day. And I have Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey to reread. I could also borrow a copy of Tale of Two Cities from my mom’s library to reread. Still, I kind of want to read something new and exciting. I may add all these great books on Christianity and life alongside the classics on my list of books I want to read. But in the end I have a soft spot for the popular, contemporary, dystopian, fight-the-evil-government YA books. At least right now. …said the English literature minor. 😛

As always, I’ll be back next friday with more quick takes!

For more Quick Takes, visit Jen at Conversion Diary and check out the link-up!